Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches

PGA National (Champion Course)

The Loop

Robin Freeman's altitude adjustment

May 27, 2010

PARKER, Colo. -- Mountain golf has its quirks. Robin Freeman sure could attest to that after the first round of the Senior PGA Championship at Colorado GC, where he shot a six-under 66 to share the lead with two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer.

The par-3 sixth hole measured 261 yards Thursday. Three-wood? Hybrid? Three-iron?

Freeman chose a 5-iron in the thin air and with a firm green, his ball finishing 20 feet behind the hole from where he made the birdie putt.

"That was a very interesting calculation going on on that hole," said Freeman, a veteran of seven events at the former PGA Tour event at Castle Pines GC. "So I played at altitude before, I know the calculations pretty well, but still, when you're standing on that tee ... but you're only trying to land it 225, 230 knowing it's going to release. But it's still pretty hard to stand back there and say, 'Yeah, I've got 261 yards and I'm going to hit a soft 5-iron. That just doesn't compute. But you still have to commit to the swing and just make it. And it worked out."

-- Bill Fields